Grading Policy


I use the following grading scale in my courses. If you have questions about your score on a particular piece of work, just ask me about it.

The Policy

Graded Items:
A "graded item" is any work receiving a grade; for example a homework, an exam, a quiz, or class participation. Each graded item is graded on a 100 point scale, where these numeric scores may be "curved" to get a more reasonable grade distribution. If I receive no work for an item, the its score (including its "curved" score) is zero. In undergraduate (College) courses I typically curve the non-zero scores so that the median is at least 85. In graduate courses (LGS), the target may be higher (like 87). I may not always curve in this way, especially in a small or experimental class.
Grade Scale:
For the course letter grade, the curved item scores are simply combined as a weighted average, and then your course letter grade is determined by the following table.

93 and above A A
90 to 92.99 A- A-
87 to 89.99 B+ B+
83 to 86.99 B B
80 to 82.99 B- B-
77 to 79.99 C+ C+
73 to 76.99 C C
70 to 72.99 C- F
67 to 69.99 D+ F
60 to 66.99 D F
 0 to 59.99 F F

Emory College does not allow A+ or D- as a letter grade. The LGS does not allow C- or below (they count as F). The Math/CS department requires a major GPA of at least 2.0 (C).

Choice of Weights:
The relative weights of the graded items should be made clear early in the semester. For example, if I say that homeworks will count for 50% of your grade, then this means that they will have equal weights, summing to 1/2. Or I could say that all homeworks will count equally, and the final exam will be weighted like three homeworks. In that case, the exact weight of the final exam will depend on the number of homeworks.
I may offer makeup versions of some assignments. If attempted, the score on a makeup replaces a previous score. A makeup may have a maximum score less than 100.
Extra Credit:
Extra credit problems are expected to be difficult. If solved, these problems simply increase the score of that homework or exam. The exact increase and formula will be specified with the problem.
Low Scores:
In a course with many small marks (for example, weekly quizzes or labs), I may offer to "throw out" the lowest mark before averaging. Otherwise, the process is the same.
S/U Grading (also known as pass/fail):
For S/U grading, S is equivalent to a letter grade of D or higher. S/U courses cannot count towards a Math/CS major or minor.


Now I point out some consequences of the policy:

Home. Last Modified: 21 Jan 2018